Electric Dreams

Finding a Happier Sex Life Through Dreams (Part I)

Tony Crisp 

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Crisp, Tony (1996 January). Finding a Happier Sex Life Through Dreams (Part I). Electric Dreams 3(1). Retrieved from Electric Dreams July 27, 2000 on the World Wide Web: http://www.dreamgate.com/electric-dreams 

The Dream Part of our Journey - About Rick Bouchard. Electric Dreams 3(1). Retrieved from Electric Dreams July 27, 2000 on the World Wide Web: http://www.dreamgate.com/electric-dreams 

ANYONE who explores the unconscious life processes in any depth, discovers that within us, beneath the veneer of modern social training and culture dwells a beast, an animal in fact the human animal. Unfortunately, until recent in-depth studies of wild animals occurred, Western culture regarded the lives of animals as bestial, governed by raw aggression, lust and lack of care. Now that animal behaviour is known to have deeply ingrained rules of behaviour which avoid unnecessary aggression, which act as an expression of caring for the young and for group survival, we need also to revise our conception of our own innate naturalness.

In their book The Human Race, Terence Dixon and Martin Lucas give the example of a male Orang-utan at Chester Zoo which was said to have wilfully murdered members of its family. But studies of Orang-utans in the wild show them to be peaceful creatures. The reason for the killing was that in their natural habitat they are monogamous, and the children leave their parents at sexual maturity. Sometimes the father drives them away. As the Chester Orang-utan was always confined in a small cage with his wife and sexually mature children, he tried to drive them away to be independent. As it was not possible to leave, his instinctive attacks continued and the children died from their injuries. Was it not the enforced and unnatural social situation which was the real murderer?

Within the unconscious most Europeans have a similar situation. Entering the unconscious is like entering a primordial world which has been formed by tens of thousands of years of survival experience by the human race. There are deeply rooted taboos, built by generation after generation accepting as true certain facts such as the wrongness of inter breeding. Just as the Orang-utan is instinctively monogamous, and has this inbuilt morality, so we too have inbuilt moral codes. However, we have created a social system which in many ways ignores these basic needs and drives and actually creates non-functional or sociallyill humans. So we have inside, not only a natural morality, sociability and sexuality, but also in many cases, an angry, perplexed animal, sick because it has been made to live in an unnatural environment like the Orang-utan. Our identity and our ability to relate to other humans sexually, develops out of our childhood experience of parents and family. Because we are human animals who live in conditions which have put us in a stress situation, we tend to damage the growth of our children at its very roots; at birth, at breast feeding and in the lack of close and long physical contact. The fact is that a 'great deal of the violence that occurs in modern Western society is directed towards children by their parents.' 1 The N.S.P.C.C. gives the figures for 1980 alone as, 65 children under the age of 15 killed by parents, 759 seriously injured, and 5,800 injured.

What tends to be overlooked is that the above figures only illustrate the obvious physical cruelty. But the vast bulk of infant cruelty goes on as apparently normal behaviour in modern society. In so called primitive societies the baby is never separated from its mother until it is psychologically and physically ready to do so of its own accord. Separation is in fact the major trauma for a baby. Yet we think nothing of immediate separation at birth because of hospital routine; the separation of baby in prams and cots; no actual skin contact for many babies at all because they are bottle fed.

We see the results in our world today as increasing numbers of non- functional human beings. Many of us cannot maintain a bonded relationship with the opposite sex; we cannot enjoy pleasurable love making; and we have no joy in our children. Sexual deviation and homosexuality are accepted as part of our world instead of signs that as a society we are creating human animals who have lost basic human/animal traits.

We need to realise, of course, that it is not the right of every animal, human or otherwise, to be completely free of problems. Even animals have sexual problems and anxieties. Fortunately human beings have a great capacity to reprogram negative habits and make changes in themselves. Where changes cannot be made, such as altering physical factors, humans also have the ability to develop a different attitude to the same situation. Because of these abilities we do not have to return to the inbuilt patterns of morality from times past; nor remain in an unsatisfactory present-day social, sexual personality structure. We have the ability to produce change in ourselves, but not by ignoring or glossing over the unconscious processes of our being, their centuries long conditioning, and their millions of year old survival drives.

We do not teach a dog to become a guide to the blind by simply talking to it. It becomes a guide dog by working with its reactions to punishment and rewards, and its natural feelings of love and herding. So our own drives can be directed to new levels of expression aid achievement by understanding them.

As a baby aid child our sexuality is completely uninhibited. Here is a dream which shows this. It is the earliest dream the person can remember from childhood.
'I am lying face up cradled in my aunt's knickers. She still has them on, so my own naked body is pressed against hers I am quite small, in that my head does not emerge from her pants, but at the same time I feel my normal size. My aunt walks around normally while I am pressed up against her, and I have an incredibly thrilling feeling of orgasm all the time, and very deep sensual pleasure too. Then my aunt passes faeces, and this is like being bathed in ecstasy. It is so strong it woke me tip. I am not sure of my age at the time, but I believe it was pre-school.'

Here the child has no problems in using images and feelings freely to express intense sexual pleasure. There is no sense of guilt, wrongness or shame about any aspect of the dream.

This next dream of C.N.B. a Navajo Indian, shows a struggle with the whole process of desire. So much so that the dream never reaches direct sexuality.

'I dreamt a bad dream about a dog. I went to hogan, but I do not know who it belonged to. Then this grey dog chased me. He got hold of my pants and
tore 'em off. Then Mrs. Armijo got hold of the dog and pulled him away. The dog tore Mrs. Armjo's dress to pieces. We were then both fighting the dog. I was talking in my dream and my wife woke me up. I told my wife nothing was the matter.

The dream suggests that C.N.B. strongly desired Mrs. Armijo, and she him, but he fought the wild desire even in his dream. This leaves him still unsatisfied. No matter what code he chooses to live by during the day, there is no point in frustrating himself at night also. In fact the first step in releasing one's sexual potential is to begin to drop the limitations we place on ourselves not only in dreams, but also in our fantasy life. In taking such a dream on to a conclusion, one should allow even the wildest fantasies.

In her book, Myself and I, Constance Newland describes her experience of sixteen LSD therapy sessions. Her given reason for entering therapy was frigidity, which led to sex being painful and unpleasant. Helped by the de-inhibiting influence of the drug, Constance gradually allowed deeper and fuller fantasy experiences until she contacted the feelings and memories which led to the physical tensions, emotional feelings and distorted impressions which underlay her frigidity. During those sessions she fantasied such things as making love to her partner; eating a desert full of hard boiled eggs; being a long scream through a tunnel; tearing her mother apart in murderous rage; being a man making love, and killing her sister. Yet her most powerful and healing session she describes as:

'... a holy experience. During this hour, with no drug or stimulus other than music, I had uncovered forgotten emotions and experiences of unbelievable reality.' Later, describing how she changed from an overweight, unattractive woman to a slim and attractive female by finding her independence, she says, I would like to emphasise that I achieved this cure for myself. I believe one can achieve psychic health without recourse to therapy. It is only when one fights a consistently losing battle against an important problem one needs help.'

Without any drug, by using fantasy and allowing her emotions to be felt, Constance plumbed the depths of her being, and brought about positive life changes.

Fantasy is the language of the unconscious processes. By its use the unconscious thinks out or works out our problems or ways of farther growth. By working with the unconscious in its labour, the process of problem solving can be speeded up enormously. As problem solving also relates to our growth, its improvement is akin to speeding up our evolution as a person. The unconscious cannot look back upon its own processes and analyse them, or ask varied questions as our waking mind can. In a certain sense the unconscious is like an amazing computer which although having enormous potential, only does what it is programmed to do.

Programs or habits are put into our unconscious originally by actual experiences and our thought/feeling reaction to them. Working with fantasy is a way of replaying these experiences and our reactions. Because we are consciously involved we can watch what is happening and ask questions or give feedback. It is helpful also to realise that fantasy is not simply a thing of the mind. A dancer who improvises is fantasising with their body. A singer who explores and idea for a song is fantasising with their voice. And an actor fantasies with his emotions, body and voice. In their cases we recognise fantasy as a highly productive tool of creativity. It is a means of exploring the new, the yet undiscovered. When we employ it with our dreams, it is also highly productive in self discovery and problem solving. By exploring a fantasy with images we can achieve a great deal. If we allow our body, voice and emotions to express in movement, sound and feelings, the pleasures, the pains, the joy, the uncertainty and the peace of our fantasy journey, the depth of discovery will be enormously increased. By allowing the body to move, we can release deep-seated physical tensions which are being touched by the fantasy.

Some important features of how to use fantasy are shown in this series of dreams and fantasies of Brian, as he explored his own sexual feelings.

'It started with a dream in which I was in the First World War in Germany. The Germans had taken a hill we had been defending, and I had been captured. I had learned to allow fantasy which included my body and feelings, and when I continued the dream I fantasised, in a very deep sense, being a prisoner and being tied to a bed. German officers tortured me by crushing my left foot, but I wouldn't give information. During the fantasy my body actually took on the position of being tied and tortured, and I cried out with the pain. It all seemed real to me, and knowing my name as that soldier, I thought it must be memories of a past life.

'Because I couldn't understand or feel conclusive about the first fantasy session I undertook another to explore further. The fantasy continued as if it was something very real. Because I would not talk I was strapped on the bed face down and a line of German soldiers came and, one after the other, buggered me. I lived this all out with my body and feelings too, and I really understood what people meant when they say "I feel buggered:" It was as if my personality had been smashed, broken, and I was just a body walking around. I had at one period relived incidents from my childhood using this method, and this experience was just as real and deeply felt. So again I concluded I must be remembering a past life. I was not happily married, and continually struggled with my sexuality, and I thought perhaps past-life experiences accounted for these inbuilt difficulties.

'On talking this over with a friend however, I noticed when I came to the past-life idea, I didn't look her in the eye, and I thought I must be avoiding looking at something in myself.
'I tried a third fantasy session, and the talk with P. must have gone deep because I seemed now to relive being attacked by two youths while I was a teenager in London. This was so realistic I had to ask my parents if I had ever come home bashed, as if I had been assaulted. They, and I, were mystified. How can one live out an event which never happened? It was so real, and I felt as if it had happened to me. I felt confused for several days.

'Then I had a dream in which an army was on the move. Some sort of national upheaval was taking place. The army was made up of teenage males. They were very "cocky" and were looking out for girls. I felt bitter about their herd feelings.

'After that I dreamt I went to look at some chickens in the garden of a house I used to live in. A large cockerel was amongst them, and to my amused pleasure began to chase the hens. They all ran madly away. My father came along and said the chickens wouldn't lay with that hen chasing them. I said it wasn't a chicken but a cockerel, and they would soon calm down. My mother now came and I said the chickens would stop running eventually because the cockerel was bigger than they. She said, no, it wasn't the size, but the manner and attitude of his approach which could cause an instinctive response in them.

'When I worked on this dream I fantasied that I was the cockerel, but I couldn't manage to give myself a real cockerel comb, or powerful neck. This showed me something from my unconscious was not going along with my fantasy. In observing the feeling I had a sort of explosion of realisation. Here I was, in a male body, yet in regard to most men I felt "chicken", subservient or as if I was trying to get them to like me. I was like a chicken in a cockerel's body. I realised I had developed that because I was always trying to get my father to give me some sign of approval or praise, and none ever came. So I had been going round trying to find an admiring father figure in other men. Also I could see the feeling showed me as chicken", scared of being a sexual male with woman. Not only because I was uncertain of myself as a male, but because my mother had scared shit out of me about sex. From thirteen to twentyone I never even had a wet dream, let alone a girl friend or masturbation, I was so scared.

'From that explosion of realisation all the other things fell into place. I remembered that as a teenager my uncle had given me a set of volumes about the war. I used to sit and look through the photos for ages. My dream and fantasy had taken the war as an expression of my own terrible inner conflict about sex. I had been a prisoner of that conflict, and had been tortured by it. My left foot was my inner feelings of confidence to stand up or support myself as a man. The buggery and the attack by youths were one and the same thing. Because I never masturbated, allowed myself a wet dream, or any flow of sexuality, the pressure of sexual drive had been introverted. Again and again I had felt that pressure as an attack which I resisted, until I was buggered as a youthful personality.

'The reason it had presented as past lives or a fantasy attack by youths was because I would sooner see it as several lives away, or as anything except feeling the fact that I had never properly turned into a man. I had resisted that so strongly my unconscious could only express the information in stories which represented the truth in the fantasy of past lives. It was only when I questioned the fantasy, and would not accept it at face value because it never actually gave me insight into my present problem or resolved it, that it was connected with my everyday life of today.
'I had one more dream in this series which shows something of the outcome. I was in a small hall with my wife, C. We were in an area like a bar enclosure for serving drinks. The whole place was dimly lit. I touched C. then ran my hands under her clothes. She responded tremendously and we fell to the floor. She was really emotional and kept crying out for me to do "something" with her legs. I forget exactly what. Then some people slowly walked into the hall from another room. Apparently they were a group interested in spiritualism, and I believe I was supposed to give them a talk. I said to C. to hold it because of the people, but she was so deep into her desires she went on demanding I have sex with her. I fought to break free, and it was quite difficult. I walked out of the bar and confronted a youngish man. We walked into another room where we talked.

'When I began to work on this dream it was very difficult. After a while I dropped my efforts and my thoughts wandered. At first I took this to be idle day dreaming, then realised I was thinking about my time in the R.A.F. when I took turns to work behind the bar. There was also an N.C.O.'s bar, in which the sergeant often locked himself and had it away with various women. I realised this connected with the bar of my dream. It was at that bar I had met H . my second girl friend, I took her on the Sussex downs and we just lay looking at the stars. She always looked so unhappy. No wonder she was so frustrated, I wanted to be seduced even then. Poor girl tried her hardest without actually losing her femininity and doing it for me.

The pattern of the dream then made sense. I had broken away, during those years, from sexual connection with women and turned to men, just as I did in the dream. All I wanted was to talk about philosophy and spiritualism. As I realised this, strong feelings arose in my abdomen, like warmth and sexual longing.

'A powerful urge to masturbate arose from this, but I wanted to share it with a woman. My wife was out. I went next door to see if my youngest son was okay there. Looking at the full breasts of P., the neighbour, I felt tremendous sexual longing, like hunger deep in my belly. I felt sex was like eating or sleeping. It had no great end solution or answer in it, and it was not a thing to aim for like a goal which would make one happy, but should be enjoyed for what it is. When my wife came home we made love. It was very full and lasted a long time.

In drawing out the information here, several things need emphasising;

a)Brian did not set out to work on his sexual difficulties. He simply worked on the war dream. This shows how the dream process is always looking at problem areas. By working with the process it was carried forward in a way it would not have been capable of without waking consciousness. For instance, there was a strong resistance for Brian to actually acknowledge his own 'hen' feelings. This would have prevented the area of feeling from being consciously known if he had not pressed on through the confusion determined to understand.

b)The drive toward understanding and insight is one of the main safeguards against being lost in meaninglessness and confusion in the unconscious world of fantasy. Some spiritualistic and psychic researchers get lost in this labyrinth of fantasy because they do not recognise how personal problems are portrayed in dramatic plots, exterior beings and past lives by the unconscious. We must never forget that the unconscious dreams. It is the great dramatist. At a moment's notice it can create a story about ourselves in any guise and any form, in symbols we will allow into consciousness.

If it is dance we will permit then we will dance out an expression of our own inner pains and wonder. If it is a paintbrush we wield, then we paint; or a dowsing rod, or a sword, or a pastlife hope, or spirits of the dead; whatever it is, the master artist, the great dreamer, weaves its wisdom, sings its song, plays out its wondrous theme of life and death, its majesty of love and struggle toward becoming in the midst of being.

By always seeking to find the connection between the dream life and the objective world of waking experience, or common human experience, we integrate our being. Brian integrated his fantasies of past lives with his present day life of teenage sexual conflict, and marital difficulty. But if he had remained in the world of past-life fantasies, he would never quite discover insight and real change in his presentday life.

c)Brian worked out his new understanding of himself and a release of his deep physical sexual hunger, through a series of dreams and fantasies. Constance Newland also found change through a series. Both suffered confusion during the series. So if a dream cannot be carried to immediate satisfaction it is perfectly normal. The unconscious factors which prevent us from creating the satisfying images or feelings need to be honoured and explored.

d)At one point Brian nearly missed the relevance of his fantasy by thinking it was 'an idle day dream.' The unconscious is incredibly responsive to the requests of the conscious self. If it were not so we would be unable to remember the countless pieces of information we do during each day. Once we have set a question to the unconscious, such as, what is the relevance of this dream to my life, or what is it telling me, the unconscious will attempt to respond, so long as we will allow it to do so.

However, there is a problem. Imagine a friend who has an amazing amount of information about life in general and also yourself, and you ask him a question. Let's say the question is, Why do I feel irritable with my husband? or, What is this dream telling me?

Supposing also that having asked, you never stop talking in order to listen for the reply; that you have already demanded that any reply must not deal with anything to do with religion or politics. The reply must not stir your emotions in ways you do not like; it must not contradict your own prejudices about life; it must not mention your inadequacies; it must not use four letter words, and most important etc., etc.

Brian was so busy trying to work on his last dream that he didn't give the unconscious a chance to respond until he gave up. So we need to be quiet and watch. If we are holding tightly to our emotions, imagination, sexuality and attitudes, how can it respond? What means has it other than our own being? Even apparently silly little things like a song coming suddenly to mind have meaning.

Brian's series of dreams and his work on them graphically depict what has already been said, that sex is not simply an isolated part of our being. Sex is intimately connected in Brian's life with his self image whether he is a hen or a cockerel; with his relationships, with his mother and father and with his philosophy of life, in which he sees sex not as a goal in itself but as a basic pleasure enjoyed for its own sake.

This dream of Barbara's shows the relationship side of sex. 'My husband and I were in bed together. I was feeling hurt as he had his back to me and was masturbating. I was thinking, "Why turn your back on me?" Then he turned over and faced me. He had his legs and thighs close to me, and with his legs apart he openly started to masturbate again. This time somehow I felt he wasn't cutting me off, and I could and did share the feeling of quiet peace and pleasure.

This is a problem solving dream in that the original feeling of being left out has been dealt with by the end of the dream. If Barbara's dream had ended before her husband turned over, it would have left a feeling of tenseness. The dream also shows Barbara feeling her husband does not need her to gain his pleasure. She resolves this difficult relationship situation by creating a feeling of being willing to share his pleasure. Perhaps that would have been the solution she would have found had she carried the unfinished dream on in visualisation. In either case she had found a way of relating to her husband in a satisfying way.

Both Barbara and Derek agreed the dream was a clear summing up of the way they were relating to each other at the time. Where Derek turns to Barbara is the point of change in the dream. If we take it literally it is a turning point in their relationship. The turning point is that he offers and she is willing to share his pleasure in his sense of independence. This sharing within independence is a point of growth many couples meet, and some founder on. The turning point in the dream is so important that Barbara and Derek need to make themselves very aware of it, and use the feelings it expresses in everyday interactions.


12.What is the Turning Point?
If we look at Brian's series of dreams in this light, there is also an apparent turning point. It begins when he is not satisfied with fantasies which do not complete the connection between his fantasy life and his lived life. But the change really occurred when he had the sudden insight into his feelings of looking for a praising father and being scared of sex. When he saw how he had pulled away from a sexual relationship out of that fear, and involved himself in philosophy and spiritualism, he was able to drop the tension in his abdomen and felt his sexual hunger. Brian's turning point, therefore, was in recognising what had been an unconscious choice, of avoiding sexual relationships because he inwardly felt female and was frightened of sex.

These turning points are like keys which unlock habitual feeling responses to a situation, allowing satisfying changes to be made. Because habits do not usually disappear overnight, these keys must be used many times in the relationship, until a new habit is formed. Therefore, the key needs to be made very conscious, written down, and frequently remembered. Or, better still, practice the change from the locked, unsatisfactory feeling state to the unlocked satisfying one. So question number four Is there something I need to practice? needs to be used here.

(Part II of this article will appear in Electric Dream 3-2, but if you can't wait, your can get the whole article now at the DreamGate gopher:
And look in the "Articles" folder for "Happier Sex Life Through Dreams.."

Finding a Happier Sex Life is a complete chapter from Tony Crisp's Instant Dream Book, published by C. W. Daniel Co., 1 Church Path, Saffron Walden, Essex, England. Copyright Tony Crisp, 1984. All rights reserved, reprinted on Electric Dreams with the permission of the author.

Finding a Happier Sex Life Through Dreams - Tony Crisp

The Dream Part of our Journey - About Rick Bouchard. Electric Dreams 3(1). Retrieved from Electric Dreams July 27, 2000 on the World Wide Web: http://www.dreamgate.com/electric-dreams


Rick Bouchard, as the director of the Dream Part of Our Journey, attends workshops at the C.G. Jung Center in Brunswick, the C.G. Jung Institute in Boston, the C.G. Jung Foundation in New York City; he is also a truth seeker within Unity Church of Greater Portland in Windham, Maine.

According to Bouchard, "My approach is Jungian, feminist, systemic, and homeopathic." He places a strong emphasis on spirituality in his practice.

The Dream Part of Our Journey Mission statement reads:

'Acknowledging there are many paths to enlightenment, "The Dream Part of Our Journey seeks to illuminate and offer dream theory, tools and techniques for working with dreams, and a forum for the feelings that arise during dreamwork through ongoing groups, workshops, and classes." '


As facilitator, I see myself as teacher, support, and spiritual guide. The leader and group members offer dream theory, techniques for working with dreams, and a forum for the feelings that arise during dreamwork. I believe a dialogue with the "unconscious" is important. It can enhance one's spiritual journey, foster wholeness, lend itself to decision making, empower, comfort, entertain, and challenge you.... To enhance one's relationship with their "dream center," a dreamer may wish to explore a variety of avenues available in dream work, such as dream incubation (consciously influencing what subjects one dreams about), lucid dreaming (dreaming with full awareness that you are dreaming), active imagination (dialoguing, during meditation, with dream characters/objects), dream re-entry (re-entering a dream from a conscious state providing an opportunity to finish or rewrite the ending) and sculpting (role playing the dream, in three dimensions, utilizing props and the other members of the group). These, and other techniques, improve dream recall, enhance self-awareness, and provide ways to illuminate & approach The Dream Part of Our Journey. Participation in dream groups can be a spiritual experience. "No dream is out of the realm of possibility for another dreamer." Anyone can imaging dreaming such a theme. This creates a commonality, a communion, and what author Jeremy Taylor refers to as "...the shared felt sense of the presence of the divine." Let us explore and honor these gifts

The Dream Part of Our Journey was founded by Rick Bouchard in 1994. While his practice offering dreamgroups is in its second year, he has been studying dreamwork for four years and remains a committed student dreamer himself. He attended the University of Southern Maine, receiving a BA in Philosophy, and the University of New England, receiving a Masters in Social Work.

The Dream Part of Our Journey is now located at On Balance at 4 Milk St. in Portland. On Balance, a center of healing education, has provided space for The Dream Part of Our Journey to conduct its groups, workshops, and classes.
E-mail Rick at: 102455.620@compuserve.com